Calls for judicial probe on the role of local police officials
Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) has expressed grave concern over reports of the disappearance of former Sonagazi OC Moazzem Hossain after an arrest warrant was issued against him under the Digital Security Act.
“We have learnt from news reports that the arrest warrant issued against Moazzem Hossain on May 27 took more than a week to reach the Rangpur Range,” TIB Executive Director Dr Iftekharuzzaman said in a statement released on Sunday.
“Then, Rangpur range said proper procedures have not been followed in this regard. Now, it is being said that he was given time to escape.”
He added, the incident also questions the intentions of the police administration in ensuring a fair trial for Moazzem’s role in madrasa student Nusrat Jahan Rafi murder case.
On April 16, Dhaka Cybercrime Tribunal issued the arrest warrant against Moazzem for recording the statement of the victim on video, and spreading it on social media.
Apart from that, Dr Iftekharuzzaman also pointed out that omitting Moazzem’s name from the Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) charge-sheet is also questionable. He called for a judicial investigation into the role of local police officials in connection with the murder case.
If transparency and accountability of the police force is not ensured, the commitment of establishing the rule of law in the country will be hindered, the statement added.
According to the case details, the victim went to Sonagazi Model police station to file a case against Sonagazi Islamia Fazil (Degree) Madrasa Principal Sirajuddaula on March 27 for sexually assaulting her the day before.
Moazzem recorded a video of her statement without her consent, while asking her offensive, and insulting questions. The video then emerged on various social media platforms. It was alleged that Moazzem had put up the video.
Nusrat, 18, who was an Alim examinee, was set on fire by Sirajuddaula’s followers on April 6 for refusing to withdraw the rape attempt case her family had filed against him. She died from the injuries four days later.